Almost five decades ago, residents of Walnut Springs organized a rattlesnake roundup. Following a 10-year hiatus, the event slithered back into the city in 2012.
This weekend, the three-day event, organized by Walnut Springs Businesses for Youth in Agriculture (WSBYA), returns. The fun kicks of Friday and winds down Sunday.
Ted Whitt, a Walnut Spring resident and event organizer, said even if the sight of snakes makes your skin crawl, there will plenty of ways to enjoy the weekend.
While the Texas Diamond Chasers - known across the Southwest as a spirited group of snake exhibitionists - entertain the crowd with snake stunts, live entertainment, street vendors and a carnival for the kiddos will line the streets throughout the weekend.
But the snake shows are something you won't want to miss.
"You might say there are more than a few death-defying feats to be seen," Whitt said. "These people not only hold live rattlesnakes, they also crawl into sleeping bags full of them and put them on top of their heads."
As far as spectators are concerned, Whitt said the Diamond Chasers also share tips on snake safety in an effort to school spectators on how to avoid danger.
"Yes, there is even some education to it," Whitt said.
The snake pit is surrounded by plexiglass, which creates a protective barrier between the crowd and the exhibitionists while still allowing viewers to catch all the action.
"Spectators are completely safe," Whitt said. "But, if they like, they can touch a snake."
While trained snake charmers will keep snakes from striking spectators, Whitt explained the rattlesnakes have not been modified to protect their handlers.
"These are snakes we caught in Walnut Springs and Glen Rose, all around Bosque and Somervell counties," he said.
Snake exhibitions will be held every hour throughout the three-day event, which will be held 12-7 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. It's just $5 for adults to catch a show and $2 for students.
On Saturday night, Somervell County's own Brady Hulsey Band will perform at the Snake Dance, which will be held 8 p.m.-midnight. Admission into the dance is $10.
Proceeds benefit Walnut Springs students, offering financial assistance with 4-H, FFA projects and more.
"We have local snakes and local talent," Whitt said. "Just head out Highway 144 to Walnut Springs. You can't miss it."